456 HISTORY OF PERSIA CHAP. Khanikoff, in 1858, was not more successful. The Afghan remembered the punishment meted out to Dost Mohamed for receiving Vitkavich, and the Persian Government was by no means ready to see Russian in- fluence predominant at Herat. Consequently, KhanikofFs mission was a decided failure, The Assertion of Persian Authority on the Persian Gulf Littoral—It has been stated in this work more than once that Persia has never been a sea-power. Nadir Shah, as mentioned in Chapter LXXIL, made an effort to assert his authority in the Persian Gulf, but, conscious of the difficulty of garrisoning its ports, he granted the district of Bandar Abbas and the islands of Hormuz and Kishm to the Shaykh of the Bani Maani tribe, in return for an annual 'tribute. Towards the end of the eighteenth century a fighting ruler of Oman, Sultan bin Ahmad,1 engaged in foreign conquests. Chahbar was first reduced, and then Kishm, Hormuz, Bahrein, and Bandar Abbas. In 1798 Sultan bin Ahmad received from the Persian Government zfarman, by the terms of which, in return for an annual payment of tomans 6000, he farmed the Bandar Abbas district. In the same year an agreement was made by this ruler with the English, who were permitted not only to reopen their factory at Bandar Abbas, but to garrison it with 700 sepoys. About this period the British naval station of Basidu (Bassadore), on the island of Kishm, was founded with the sanction of the ruler of Maskat: it still remains British property, although not at present garrisoned. In the middle of the nineteenth century the Persian Government decided to administer the ports directly, and during the absence of Sayyid Said of Maskat at Zanzibar expelled the Maskat Governor, An expedition from Maskat recaptured the ports ; but the Persians, having received large reinforcements, were too strong for Sayyid Said, who was hampered by a British interdict against movements of armed parties by sea. Finally, in 1856, peace was made, on the terms that the Imam of Maskat should farm the ports for twenty years on an increased 1 Vide Badger's Imams of Oman, p. 226.